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UCGia Bible Insights Thursday, August 15 2019

The frog in the pot

We have to be careful about unconsciously compromising with non-biblical customs and opinions in our society. The old adage of the frog slowly cooking in a pot of gradually heating water is a timely reminder.

The storyteller explains that if a frog is put into a pot of boiling water, it will leap out right out to escape the danger. However, if the same frog is placed in a kettle filled with water at a pleasant temperature it will stay there. Then if the water is gradually heated until it starts boiling, the frog will not become aware of the threat until it is too late.

The tale was, and still is, an important warning. It encourages us to pay attention not just to obvious threats or influences, but also to the subtle, more slowly developing wrong influences of the world in which we live.

As Christians we must continue to live in a world in which the majority do not honour our Creator or look to Him for direction in their lives. Although we live (physically) in the world, we should not be (philosophically) of the world. The apostle Paul described the world being influenced by Satan, ‘the prince of the power of the air’ (Ephesians 2:2). Most people don’t realize that many of their previous values and actions before they were called of God were actually a result of subtle, non-biblical influences— the hot water in the boiling pot!

Jesus Christ expressed great concern about protecting the Church from the evil influence of this world. Notice His words to His Father in prayer: “I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world” (John 17:15-16).

The Apostle John also warns: "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” (1 John 2:15). In verse 16 John goes on to mention that “the lust of the flesh”, “the lust of the eyes” and “the pride of life” are not of our Father in heaven. (Click on the link below for more information concerning these temptations.)

Asking for God’s help in prayer in order to recognise these wrong influences is very important. Also fellowship with others who share your beliefs is an important key to remaining focused on God’s way of life: “And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works. Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching” (Hebrews 10:24-25).

Worldly influences should not be underestimated. We have to be alert to the slowly changing trends in our environment, not just the sudden changes.